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Nathan's Famous

1310 Surf Ave, Brooklyn, NY - (718) 946-2202
Posted By Michael Stern on 1/20/2010 3:46:00 PM
Is there any eater in America who doesn’t know about Nathan’s? The hot dog was virtually invented at this Coney Island landmark in 1916; and in many parts of the United States, the very term Coney Island has come to be synonymous with hot dog.

There are Nathan’s franchises in malls and shopping centers all over the country. The ones we’ve tried are quite alright. However – and this is a huge however – none can compare with the original Nathan’s, by the boardwalk on Surf Avenue in Coney Island. Radiating the irresistible aromas of frankfurters and French fries into the oceanic air, the Coney Island landmark serves hot dogs that simply taste better than those at any other Nathan’s … and, quite honestly, better than those at almost any other hot dog place in greater New York.

Maybe the magic is in the place itself – still basically an overgrown hot dog stand – or maybe it’s the setting by the saltwater in a neighborhood that retains a honky-tonk character. Or maybe it’s the perfection of the hot dog itself. There is something extra-special about sitting down (or standing up) in this historic spot and crunching through the taut skin of an all-beef hot dog nestled in a steamy soft bun. Cheese and/or chili are nice options, but frankly, this is one tube steak that is so good au naturel that we almost never put anything on it but a schmear of mustard. The side dishes are excellent, especially the crinkly fried potatoes (also available with blankets of cheese and chili). Nathan’s serves hamburgers, chicken sandwiches, and a limited menu of fried seafood. We’ve never ordered any, and have never known anyone else who has.

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Scorecard

5 - Overall: Legendary - Worth driving from anyplace
Overall: Legendary - Worth driving from anyplace
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Reviewers Photos [Upload Your Photos]

Two Nathan's all-beef dogs topped with mustard and relish: life is good!
"Two Nathan's all-beef dogs topped with mustard and relish: life is good!"
Michael Stern





Well-dressed dogs wear onions and Nathan's chili.
"Well-dressed dogs wear onions and Nathan's chili."
Sam Meyer


My pre-Brooklyn Cyclones game meal.  Yes, I like my dog with mustard, ketchup and kraut.  Add some of those famous fries and you have a great meal.
"My pre-Brooklyn Cyclones game meal. Yes, I like my dog with mustard, ketchup and kraut. Add some of those famous fries and you have a great meal. "
Bill Homan


Nathan's bacon cheese fries.  It's not real cheese, but who cares?
"Nathan's bacon cheese fries. It's not real cheese, but who cares?"
Sam Meyer


Not something I would eat everyday, but boy, a bacon cheese dog was exactly what I wanted on that night!
"Not something I would eat everyday, but boy, a bacon cheese dog was exactly what I wanted on that night!"
Bill Homan


Just part of the huge menu at Nathan's.  They offer many other things, such as seafood, but the dogs and fries are what have been bringing in the crowds for over 90 years.
"Just part of the huge menu at Nathan's. They offer many other things, such as seafood, but the dogs and fries are what have been bringing in the crowds for over 90 years. "
Bill Homan


Not something that shows up on too many menus, but I feel compelled to try it.
"Not something that shows up on too many menus, but I feel compelled to try it."
Bill Homan


You can get food to take home at Nathan's, but the preferred eating locale is at one of the stand-up counters or in the small courtyard off Surf Avenue.
"You can get food to take home at Nathan's, but the preferred eating locale is at one of the stand-up counters or in the small courtyard off Surf Avenue."
Sam Meyer


Original & Famous.
"Original & Famous."
Sam Meyer


Going strong for over 90 years.
"Going strong for over 90 years."
Bill Homan


For me, getting a dog and some of those famous fries after a ball game is a true Coney Island experience.
"For me, getting a dog and some of those famous fries after a ball game is a true Coney Island experience."
Bill Homan


Where America's hot dog culture began
"Where America's hot dog culture began"
Michael Stern


The one that started it all.
"The one that started it all."
Bill Homan


A postcard from Nathan's collection showing Coney Island in more carefree days.
"A postcard from Nathan's collection showing Coney Island in more carefree days."
Michael Stern



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